We re delighted to announce that the Landscape Rewilding Programme of Snowchange has been selected to be a Finalist for the St Andrews Prize for the Environment, one of the most prestigious environmental prizes.
The Jury says: “Originally founded in 2000, Snowchange Cooperative is a network of Indigenous and local-traditional communities working on cultural, environmental and science issues. They primarily support programmes in the boreal and the Arctic to advance Indigenous cultural issues and wellbeing, rewilding and ecosystem restoration, as well as landscape-scale restoration of community lands.
Using Indigenous and traditional knowledge alongside the latest science and research, their Landscape Rewilding Programme rebuilds community- and Indigenous-relevant lands, forests and waters into biodiversity hotspots, carbon sinks, carbon stores, and healthy environments.
The Arctic and the boreal ecosystems are hardest hit by rapidly advancing climate change, yet the northern peatlands and associated forests contain at least one third of the world’s soil-based carbon. Using Indigenous and traditional knowledge alongside the latest science and research, the Landscape Rewilding Programme restores and rewilds landscape-wide degraded ecosystems, especially peatlands, in the boreal back to health. Biodiversity issues are immediately alleviated, carbon sinks start to refunction, and water pollution is reduced, improving the health and wellbeing of the communities.”
Tero Mustonen from Snowchange comments:
“The St Andrews Prize has already changed us. The staff and involved community people feel their long-term commitment to their homelands and landscapes they are rewilding has been truly recognized in this manner for the first time. We join in celebration of whoever receives the final prize, as it has already been so uplifting and empowering to us as a network. We know that our work matters for all of Europe – given the critical role of our sites as the nesting areas of the billions of birds who arrive here during the northern summer. Additionally we are alleviating the climate change impacts in scale through the peatland restoration. We hope this recognition leads to a large, wide alliance on northern rewilding that honors the local and Indigenous peoples who have spent their lives on this, especially the women who lead us like Kaisu Mustonen and Pauliina Feodoroff.”
The two other finalists are
- Planet Indonesia: Conserving Mangroves and Restoring Coastal Fisheries through a Community-led Integrated Landscape Initiative
- Cities Without Hunger Brazil: Organic Urban Gardens São Paulo